Cites Gateway as a Project of “National Significance”
SAYREVILLE, NJ – New Jersey Assemblyman and Deputy Speaker John S. Wisniewski has joined with Vermont Representative Patrick Brennan in submitting testimony to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations.
The testimony, presented on behalf of the Council of State Governments Eastern Regional Conference (CSG/ERC), outlined the organization’s assessment of the region’s transportation budget concerns and priorities for the federal FY18 budget for the U.S. Department of Transportation. Wisniewski and Brennan serve as chair and vice-chair, respectively, of the CSG/ERC Transportation Policy Committee.
Among the priorities of the CSG/ERC is an increased investment in the Northeast Corridor (NEC). “Many segments of the NEC are already at capacity, especially during peak periods, and NEC rail ridership is projected to increase by over 50% by 2040,” stated the testimony. At the direction of Chairman Wisniewski, the testimony pointed out the specific problems at New York’s Penn Station and the need for the Gateway project.
“Penn Station in New York is the busiest in the Amtrak system and … there is literally no spare infrastructure capacity.” The testimony went on to say that “To address this issue of capacity into New York, the “Gateway Project” is the single most important investment needed to unlock the capacity constraints on the NEC… This project is truly one of national significance and should be treated as such.”
The testimony concluded by stating that ‘it is vital that we do not under invest in the nation’s transportation system; doing so will seriously limit the nation’s ability to compete in the global marketplace, while also having a negative impact on safety, security, reliability and mobility.”
The CSG is a national organization of states and U.S. territories. The member states of the Eastern Regional Conference of CSG stretch from Maine to Maryland and include Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. ERC international associate members also include five Eastern Canadian Provinces. Assemblyman Wisniewski has served as the chair of the CSG/ERC Transportation Policy Committee since 2006.